Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin today joined Governor Martin O’Malley to announce that Maryland is distributing $2.2 million worth of federal funds to organizations throughout the state that work to help women who are the victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking and dating violence. The funds from the S*T*O*P (Services, Training, Officers and Prosecutors) Violence Against Women (VAWA) are grants allocated from the US Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women.
“Nearly three in four Americans personally know someone who is or has been a victim of domestic violence, and these statistics permeate all socioeconomic, ethnic, racial, religious groups in our nation,” said Senator Cardin. “This grant will enhance advocacy and improve the criminal justice system’s response to violence against women, bringing us closer to ending domestic violence in Maryland.”
“The most important responsibilities we have in government are to create jobs and protect the public’s safety,” said Governor O’Malley. “These federal funds will help us meet our goal of reducing violent crimes against women in Maryland. The organizations receiving these grants are working together to provide comprehensive strategies that are sensitive to the needs and safety of victims, and that hold offenders accountable for their crimes.”
The VAWA program is administered by the Governor’s Office of Crime Control & Prevention (GOCCP) which provides funding to law enforcement, prosecution, the court system and non-profit, non-governmental victim service agencies. Recipients are encouraged to forge lasting partnerships between the criminal justice system and victim advocacy organizations, and to look beyond traditional resources by partnering with community and faith-based organizations to respond more vigorously to domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking crimes.